Rule 37: The Fitzgerald

Modern Drunkard Magazine’s articleThe 86 Rules of Boozing, by Frank Kelly Rich states:
Rule 37. Try one new drink each week.
The Rule 37 series of posts chronicle my attempts to accomplish this feat every week.
For the recipes of R37s past, click the Htf do I make these drinks? tab.

This week’s Bacchanalian bounty comes courtesy of 12 Bottle Bar, a post from about two years ago. The Fitzgerald is, essentially, a gin sour. Apparently created by legend Dale DeGroff, 12 Bottle got the recipe from DeGroff’s OTHER cocktail book, The Essential Cocktail: The Art of Mixing Perfect Drinks. If I owned that particular tome, I likely would have made this one long ago, as I am generally a fan of sours. Sours are a certain family of cocktails, like slings, cobblers, flips and collinseses. The sour is a mixture of spirit, sugar, and citrus juice, usually in similar ratios, and is one of the most popular styles of mixed drinks. Here’s a few examples:

Whiskey Sour: whiskey, simple syrup, lemon juice

Daiquiri (Rum Sour): rum, simple syrup, lime juice

Margarita (Tequila Sour): tequila, triple sec, lime juice

Sidecar (Brandy Sour): brandy or cognac, triple sec, lemon juice

Kamikaze (Vodka Sour): vodka, triple sec, lime juice.

Pisco Sour: pisco, simple syrup, lime juice, egg white, Angostura bitters

Traditionally, a whiskey sour also contained egg white, which gives the drink a frothier, creamier mouthfeel, though I don’t really care for it.

So, the Fitzgerald is a gin sour, with some Angostura bitters added in. Here’s how to make it:

The Fitzgerald

– 1 1/2 oz gin (Bombay London Dry used)
– 3/4 oz lemon juice
– 3/4 oz simple syrup
– 2 dashes Angostura bitters

Shake with ice, strain, and serve in a cocktail glass. Float a lemon wheel as garnish. Sip quietly among the violets whilst contemplating the Violet Hour.

The two dashes of Angostura give the liquid an orange hue, rather than the usual pale lemon yellow sour. The nose is rather gin-y, with a botanical perfume wafting up from the surface, despite the lemon wheel lazily drifting about the coupe. There is a slight Pledge quality from the citrus, though the gin certainly dominates the aroma.

The taste is a lovely floral mixture of gin and lemon, but sweet. After being spoiled by tasty Rehorst Gin, I find the Bombay London Dry to be a bit on the perfumey side, like funeral homes and plug-in air fresheners. It’s certainly a lemony drink, and the Angostura lends a much-needed dark spice to the background. Without the bitters, this would likely be too sickly-sweet, but the cinnamon clove zest of the Angostura certainly livens up the party. It’s quite nice, but I’d like it better with a different gin and an extra dash of bitters.

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